18 Jan – Banking London’s Monopoly Board and Getting Jailed

Today I am starting from Go, but no-one appears to have handed me £200? Any volunteers? Just to keep my Alzheimer’s Challenge on track, I have decided to run the Monopoly Board – not in one go, as that is close to marathon distance, but taking it colour by colour. First run to include The Old Kent Road and Whitechapel Road.

A door-to door run is about 12km, but I do need to run a little more than that to make up for my January deficit. I am not aware of a Community Chest stop nor an Income Tax Office (now HMRC), but I can probably swing a detour via Liverpool Street and Fenchurch Street stations. That is the plan, middle aged knees may choose otherwise oh and there’s a small matter of using this run to leave me with ONLY 1,950 kms on the Alzheimer’s Challenge.

I am out of the door, Map My Run is set, Google Maps is on voice directions and I am playing my new Spotify playlist. What could possibly go wrong? Except we all know when it comes to my technical competence, many, many things can go wrong.

First of all my warm up walk takes me within a smidgeon of Liverpool Street Station, and I take a pic as proof of one Monopoly Station being done. Having scrutinised the board, the stations are not necessarily anywhere near the other coloured squares on the board, so I am giving myself leeway to visit them when the run makes it convenient. This ‘convenience’ loophole will definitely work in my favour over the coming runs.

Liverpool Street is so early in the run, I make my way to Fenchurch Street Station – about one km further on. Tick that’s another done and it’s on the other side of the Monopoly Board. Next are the not so salubrious charms of Whitechapel Road, out towards Aldgate High Street, this is a horrid area to run, mainly because it is one big traffic junction, and frankly it’s not much better on Whitechapel Road either. I came across the Whitechapel road-sign a little earlier than expected, so needing to bank some kms I trotted further up the street. First technical hitch, having gone beyond the Google Maps point, all directions have stopped, the lady isn’t even telling me to turn around; an unscheduled pitstop to re-set the Google Maps directions and I continue.

For my friends and family who know me as being directionally challenged, it isn’t that I didn’t know where these first three places where, as I used to use Aldgate East tube, go to Fenchurch Street in my old Finserv  Marketing days, and have shopped on Whitechapel Road, it’s just that I wanted the security blanket of being sure I had my route right. Heading back to Aldgate I hook left to Leman Street to make my way towards Tower Bridge, en route to the Old Kent Road. Obviously at Tower Bridge we have the Tower of London, which I understand counts as ‘Jail’ on the Monopoly board running game. Result, another square ticked off.

Now I am south of the river and in unknown territories. Lo and behold Google Maps Lady has gone awol again, so another quick re-set and we are on our way. I had a quick shimmy with what looked like one of the banned pit bull dogs on Tower Bridge Road, I must admit my heart was in my mouth, but he was more interested in sniffing a lamp-post than a middle aged nervous runner. I ended up in some back streets stuffed full of small business premises, some doing well even with the Brexit vote as one had an Aston Martin parked outside. Not quite what I was expecting in this part of South London; still expectations are best broken occasionally. Eventually I got to Old Kent Road, which looked quite grotty if I am truthful. It is a main trunk road, choked with traffic and smelling of pollution. I took the obligatory proof picture and turned back. This was my second Monopoly coloured square, so that is the ‘browns’ done with two added train stations and the jail square. This was about the 9km mark, so good JCR but certainly not exceptional.

I then remembered that I could swing home via the Bank of England and as no-one volunteered to give me £200 to start my Monopoly quest, at least I could go to a place where £200 could be found. So a scoot towards the Lord Mayor’s building and I found myself listening to a song by Clout called ‘Substitute’ on Spotify, which is all well and good, I like the song, but it wasn’t on the playlist I had been playing. Another technical hitch Spotify just wouldn’t play any of my playlists. That meant a good 2 or 3 minutes faffing about with my phone trying to get a restart. And it wouldn’t work, so I reverted to an old iTunes playlist instead. Curses, curses, curses, I did have a slight Dick Dastardly tantrum outside the Mayor’s office.

Onward to London Bridge and I climbed the steps ( I admit I didn’t run up the 30+ steps I was too knackered) going towards the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street and there she was slightly in shadow, but I had got to the Bank of England too. That definitely counts as another square in my Monopoly convenience loophole ruling.

At this point I wasn’t really sure if I had done sufficient to get me beneath the magic 1950km mark for my Alzheimer’s challenge, so I schlepped onwards through Moorgate and towards home. Outside the runner’s shop in Chiswell Street, my little legs had had enough at 14.36km, that is a third of a marathon! The furthest I have ever run. Oh and 2 brown squares, a jail, the Bank, and two train stations, that’s a great Monopoly result first time out.

Playlist (as much as I can recall given the technical hitches)

Off The Wall – Michael Jackson

Good Times – Chic

Be Young, Be Foolish, Be Happy – The Tams

I Wanna Dance With Somebody – Whitney Houston

Amarillo – Tony Christie

Three Little Birds – Bob Marley and The Wailers

Let’s Dance – Chris Montez

Stoned Love – The Supremes

Shake Your Groove Thing – Peaches and Herb

Boogie Shoes – KC And The Sunshine Band

Club Tropicana – Wham

Can’t Give You Anything But My Love – The Stylistics

(this was technical meltdown point and I moved from Spotify)

Don’t You Want – Human League

Einstein A Go-Go – Landscape

New Life – Depeche Mode

House of Fun – Madness

New Moon On Monday – Duran Duran

Maid of Orleans – OMD

It’s Raining Men – The Weather Girls


Distance 14.36km

Time 1:55:16 did include picture stops and tetchy meltdown moments!

Average Pace 8:01 (mins/km)

Elevation Gain 91 metres

Tech Glitches – at least 3

Alzheimer’s Challenge

One big thank you to Neil and Angela for sponsoring me on the Alzheimer’s Challenge

Cumulative Km Done 70.02km

Kms To Do 1947.98 (it’s not looking much better, I can tell you)

Sponsor me on BT MyDonate

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